Are you considering an oscillating multi-tool, or do already own one but don’t seem to be using it as much as you thought you would?
Not to worry! The following guide showcase uses for an oscillating tool, from every day to more unique jobs that may never have crossed your mind.
Hopefully, upon finishing the article you will have learned many new ways an oscillating tool can be used and if you haven’t already, take the leap and purchase one using our best oscillating multi-tool guide!
With the ever-growing number of accessories available for oscillating multi-tools, there is an abundance of potential jobs it can tackle. They really are a hidden gem amongst power tools and one we believe both professionals and casual DIYers should own. So, without further ado, let’s get started!
On this page
- 1. Removing rust from the surface of metal
- 2. Cutting cement backer board
- 3. Tile grout removal
- 4. Cutting pipe
- 5. Installing wooden flooring planks
- 6. Caulk / Sealant Removal
- 7. Undercutting doorjambs
- 8. Removing old layers of paint
- 9. Drywall cut-outs
- 10. Removing adhesive
- 11. Tearing up old carpet
- 12. Sanding awkward surfaces
- 13. Removing ceramic tiles
- 14. Installing & modifying cabinets
- 15. Cutting nails and screws
- 16. Restoring old furniture
- 17. Adding texture to a slippery concrete surface
- 18. Repairing Windows
- 19. Scraping away concrete after a masonry job
- 20. Plunge cutting damaged sections of walls
- 21. Removing trim
- 22. Trim and sand the interior of furniture
- 23. Plunge cutting countertops
- 24. Removing thin-set mortar
- 25. Dealing with stubborn nuts
- 26. Cutting through rigid insulation
- 27. Removing paint from a metal surface
- 28. Resizing your golf clubs
- 29. Removing a toilet
- 30. Desk wire management
1. Removing rust from the surface of metal
Rust can quickly creep up and become a real nuisance before you have time to realize it has taken hold. Fortunately, an oscillating multi-tool with a sanding pad will make easy work of any unwanted rust, returning the surface to new.
2. Cutting cement backer board
Although there are several ways to cut cement backer board, few are as clean and precise as an oscillating multi-tool. Also, its lightweight design makes odd shape cuts super easy!
3. Tile grout removal
Specifically designed grout removal blades are available, making this a go-to tool for such jobs. The oscillating, as opposed to spinning motion of other tools, also help maintain a cleaner working environment.
4. Cutting pipe
Oscillating tools are very well suited to cutting pipe due to their ability to let you cut at awkward angles and in tight spaces. Whether it is plastic, metal or copper pipe, the right attachment will make quick work of it. Wide-edged blades are also available to help prevent slippage during cutting.
5. Installing wooden flooring planks
Making plunge cuts into hardwood flooring couldn’t be easier with an oscillating tool. Simply attach a suitable hardwood plunge cutting blade and cut the desired section for a clean and precise cut6.
6. Caulk / Sealant Removal
A scraper blade attachment will make light work at removing any unwanted caulk or sealant right from your work surface.
7. Undercutting doorjambs
It is common for doorjambs to occur after the installation of new flooring. An oscillating tool with the appropriate wood cutting blade attachment can ensure this doesn’t happen, or fix an already established issue without damaging the floor.
8. Removing old layers of paint
Painting is perhaps the most common DIY project undertaken in our homes. However, before jumping right in and coating your surface with your new favorite color, is it important to prepare it beforehand. This can be done through the use of a steel scraper blade to scrap the paint off followed by a sanding pad attachment until you get the right level of smoothness.
9. Drywall cut-outs
The plunge cutting ability of an oscillating tool makes it perfect at cutting out openings in drywall for something like a power outlet or light fitting.
10. Removing adhesive
Floor adhesive can be a real pain to remove. Thankfully an oscillating tool can turn this usually frustrating and time-consuming job into a walk in the park. All you need to do is slide the blade under the adhesive with a scraper blade attachment and get to work.
11. Tearing up old carpet
Once you have removed that old carpet you may be left with one massive sheet that is impossible to remove from the room. Not to worry, simply switch to a cutting attachment and piece up the carpet into easily transferable bits.
12. Sanding awkward surfaces
You can be often faced with awkward objects and surfaces that need sanding such as long narrow edges and corners. The easy to use design and triangular sanding pad of an oscillation tool is the perfect solution.
13. Removing ceramic tiles
If you’re in the process of redecorating or need to remove a broken tile, an oscillating tool offers all the traits needed to complete the job from start to finish.
14. Installing & modifying cabinets
Whether you need to install a new cabinet or modify an existing one, an oscillating tool is an excellent choice. Its ability to perform a variety of off-axis cuts make it the ideal tool for quick installation and modification of all kinds of cabinets.
15. Cutting nails and screws
Attach a metal cutting blade to remove those unwanted nails, screws and other unwanted metal objects from your work surface.
Tip: This job can create a lot of heat, to combat this you can add lubricant to the blade to act as a coolant and reduce friction.
16. Restoring old furniture
The versatility of an oscillating tool makes it a great choice of tool for restoring old furniture. Anything from cutting old nails, removing damaged sections without damaging the surrounding area or sanding the surface to breath new life into the object, an oscillating multi-tool can do it all.
17. Adding texture to a slippery concrete surface
Freshly laid concrete can be slippery and depending on its location be a potential health hazard. An oscillating tool with a fine sanding pad can texturize the surface of the concrete to give it some grip and remove the chance of slippage.
18. Repairing Windows
Do you have windows in need of some restoration? If so, an oscillating tool is for you! From improving the appearance of old windows by sanding, securing their weather tightness through stripping or improving their functionality by cutting, an oscillating tool with the appropriate attachment has you covered.
19. Scraping away concrete after a masonry job
Not only are these tools excellent during a job they can also come in handy once a job has been completed. Attach a metal scraper and get to work on scraping away any unwanted concrete. It can also be used to clear up worksite mess caused by dropped concrete mix or any other dried material, returning the area back to new.
20. Plunge cutting damaged sections of walls
Do you have a dented section of wall and aren’t completely sure on the best way to go about fixing it? Not to worry! All you need is an oscillating tool with a plunge cutting attachment to simply cut out the damaged portion, leaving behind minimal repair work.
21. Removing trim
Slide an oscillating tool blade behind the trim, along with a sheet of metal to protect the wall. Gently move your oscillating tool to search for nails behind the trim. You can also produce a clean verticle cut to remove specific sections. Trim removal couldn’t be any easier!
22. Trim and sand the interior of furniture
Working on chairs or on the inside of drawers can become a tricky job with most tools. The sleek and narrow design along with its ability to cut off axis makes the oscillating tool uniquely positioned to work on these awkward jobs.
23. Plunge cutting countertops
Thinking about doing some home improvements such as cutting through some new or existing countertop to fit in a new sink? Owning an oscillating tool makes this a possibility, the DIY capabilities of a simple oscillating tool are truly phenomenal!
24. Removing thin-set mortar
Whether you are applying new tiles or replacing old ones an oscillating tool couldn’t make the process any easier. Simply attach a grinder pad and get to work removing the thin-set mortar and clean the surface ready to reapply to a new layer.
25. Dealing with stubborn nuts
Often muscle just isn’t enough to remove these stubborn nuts, especially when they have begun to rust. Also, they tend to be positioned where saws can’t reach. A metal cutting blade attachment angled against the nut can turn an impossible situation into a 30-second job.
26. Cutting through rigid insulation
Insulation can often be a tricky material to cut smoothly. With an oscillation tool, you can get the job done exactly how you want in no time at all!
27. Removing paint from a metal surface
Stripping paint from a metal surface would usually be a troublesome and time-consuming task. With an oscillating tool, it becomes the complete opposite!
28. Resizing your golf clubs
Believe it or not, you can save money paying for a professional and shorten your clubs yourself. All it takes is a metal cutting blade capable of cutting through the graphite club shafts, finished up with some light sanding.
29. Removing a toilet
Toilets are often bolted and caulked to the floor. Save yourself time by cutting through the aged bolts rather than trying to unscrew them. For the caulk, a quick change of attachments to a scraper blade will see it removed in no time.
30. Desk wire management
We have all witnessed the mess wires can cause. To some, it isn’t an issue, but to others, it is the ultimate OCD nightmare. The addition of a drywall jab saw blade attachment will enable you to make precise circular plunge cuts exactly where you want to feed that jungle of cables through to create a stress-free and productive environment.
The fact all the jobs listed above can be performed with one single and affordable tool is mind-blowing. If you don’t already own an oscillating multi-tool you are doing yourself a disservice! You can find more about them here.
If you’re already a proud owner of one then I hope you have learned of a few new ways you can put it to use!